Digital Marketing Game-Changers

Spencer Soloway
August 8, 2017
We want to share all the exciting presenters and big ideas from this year’s conferences. We hope you find them useful!

Last month was our big digital conference month, with Carrie attending the Digital Summit in Portland and Spencer attending MozCon in Seattle. Afterward, we were buzzing around on Slack with a million ideas, not only for our clients but for internal solutions as well. We want to share all the exciting presenters and big ideas from this year’s conferences. We hope you find them useful!

#1 Bigger, Braver, Bolder

Ann Handley— Digital Marketing & Content Expert


Consumers expect brands to have a voice that matters. Being vanilla and playing it safe is no longer a strategy consumers have much patience for. You will quickly learn that your competitors who present their brand with bold statements, interesting points of view, and thoughtful messaging are winning the race—customers love them for it and these efforts are paying dividends.


Use your company persona to create and tell a great story. That story doesn’t have to be complicated. Here are some examples of companies who excel at this:

  • Warby Parker: Free try-ons of vintage-inspired eyewear delivered to your house.
  • Leader Bag Co: Three moms who could not find a diaper bag that was beautiful and functional so they created their own.
  • Toms: Buy one pair of shoes and they'll give one pair to a child in need.
  • Lokai: Bracelets made with elements from Mt. Everest and the Dead Sea remind wearers to “stay humble, stay hopeful”.


  • Your brand should be identifiable in everything you do. Use humor and persona. Be relatable!

#2 A roadmap to Remarkable Marketing

Tyler Farnsworth—Managing Director at August United

Grow awareness, improve engagement, and drive your audience to take action. Here's How:

  • Identify influencers that align with your brand.
  • Come up with an influencer strategy: send product, ask them to engage and post to social media. What do they enjoy sharing? Build your strategy around that.
  • Set Key Performance Indicators (KPI) that work for you. Is it, more engagement on posts? Bringing awareness to a new product? Sales?

#3 Future Shock: Marketing in an Era of Information Overload

Geoffrey Colon—Sr. Marketing Communications Designer at Microsoft

AIDA = Attention——>Interest——>Decision——>Action

In today’s information-flooded world, the scarcest resource is not ideas or talent, it’s ACTION. How do you get there?

  • Tell more stories
  • Stay ahead of trends
  • Be opinionated (or bold as we learned from Ann Handley!)
  • Have heartwarming content
  • Focus on things everybody needs (health, wellness, food)

Rethink your group segmentations – swap age and demographics for consumer interests. Instead of marketing your product to, say, millennials, try to reach people who are interested in travel or lifestyle. (Not sure what your customers are interested in? We can help with that.)

#4 Writing Copy that Converts

Joel Klettke - Conversion Optimization Consultant

When building out effective landing pages, break them down into header, body, and call to action. Consider the following for every page on your website, particularly those where you’re asking people to exchange their information for your content:

In your hero image, focus on why the customer should care, what you’re talking about on the page, and who it’s for. In the body of your page consider how your content will improve their life, why it will work, and why they should trust you. And focus your call to action on what happens next.

#5 The Tie that Binds - Why Email is the Key to Maximizing Marketing ROI

Justine Jordan - VP of Marketing, Litmus

**We highly recommend keeping up with Litmus’s blog if your company uses email as a marketing channel.**

Find the right balance between subscriber needs and business needs in email.  Switch up your email sends. Don’t just blast out “BUY NOW” messages all the time, instead mix them in with emails that are fun, relevant, and provide value to the customer.

Before you send an email, review Chad S. White’s Hierarchy of Customer Needs. Ensure that your e-mails meet as many of these needs as possible:

Hierarchy of Subscriber Needs

Make it easy for customers to both unsubscribe and manage their relationship with you. Remember that there’s no shame in unsubscribes, but you will have a problem if you make it difficult for your prospects and customers to do so, as they’re considerably more likely to mark you as spam in that case.

#6 Marketing in a Conversational World

Purna Virji - Senior Training Manager at Microsoft

The future of search is moving in a more conversational direction.

While not a topic of her discussion, featured snippets in Google is a great example. To see what we’re talking about, try searching for something like “what to wear to a baby shower” and notice the article called out at the top of Google search.

Bing is handling conversational search in a really compelling way, by adding chatbot capability inside of the search engine result page. While it’s only available with a few select restaurants in the Seattle area at the moment, expect this to be coming to more and more searches in the near future. Try this search and click on the Chat button for an example.

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